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Sunday, 31 October 2010

Habeus Corpus - Illegal Detention

Q: What remedies do I have against illegal imprisonment?

A: The ultimate purpose of a writ of habeas corpus is to provide a remedy in cases of illegal restraint or confinement by testing the legality of a person’s detainment. A petition for issuance of the writ can be filed by the imprisoned person or by other individuals acting on his or her behalf. If the court cannot find any legal justification for the person’s detention, an immediate release is ordered.

It remains in effect today (especially in the UK and US), where it is most often used in immigration cases to test the legality of the detention of immigrants, extradition proceedings, and to challenge detention under mental health legislation.

In Trinidad and Tobago, this is governed by the Habeas Corpus Act 8:01 as amended by the The Habeus Corpus (Amendment) Bill, 1996.

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